It may have taken three attempts but the Lake Washington Kangaroos girls softball team finally left the field victorious following a matchup against the Bellevue Wolverines.
The Kangaroos, who suffered two defeats against the Wolverines during the 2019 regular season, responded with a monumental 12-5 win against Bellevue in the 3A KingCo tournament championship game May 10 at Inglemoor High School in Kenmore. The Kangaroos clinched the No. 1 seed from 3A KingCo Conference to the 2019 SeaKing district 3A softball tournament with the win. Bellevue will be the No. 2 seed from 3A KingCo at districts. The SeaKing district tournament will take place from May 13-17 at the Southwest Athletic Complex in Seattle.
Lake Washington head coach Jessica Carey was beaming after watching her squad defeat the Wolverines for the first time during the 2019 season.
“It was a great team win. They just decided they wanted it. They were going to take it and they went for it,” Carey said of her team. “Bellevue was definitely the team to beat this year. We wanted it and we took it. I couldn’t be prouder.”
Lake Washington scored one run in the top of the second inning and added two runs in the top of third, extending its lead to 3-0. Bellevue responded with three runs in the bottom of the third, tying the game at 3-3. Bellevue added two runs in the bottom of the fourth to take a 5-4 lead.
The top of the sixth belonged to the Kangaroos.
Lake Washington sent nine batters to the plate and scored five runs in the inning to take a commanding 9-5 lead. Kangaroos’ sophomore Maddie Miller, who was the second person at the plate in the top of the sixth, connected on a two-run home run, which set the tone. The Kangaroos tacked on three more runs in the top of the seventh to seal the win.
Bellevue head coach Marty Martin remained optimistic despite the loss in the final contest of the 3A KingCo tournament.
“The kids did great. There was a lot of pressure coming in here. For a lot of our players, it was the first time they’ve had to do this,” Martin said of competing in a title game.
The Wolverines, who have seven ninth-graders on the varsity roster, gained valuable experience in a pressure packed moment. Bellevue didn’t flinch early on after falling behind 3-0.
“It was a really good experience for our freshmen to get that work in,” Martin said. “This team as a whole has hit in the high .400s (batting average) all year. I knew we would come back and we did.”
Martin credited Lake Washington starting pitcher Tess Bumiller for keeping the Wolverines off balance.
“She is doing great this year. She is tough and has a lot of nice action on her pitches. It is not something we see a lot, so it was a tough adjustment,” Martin said.
* Juanita also qualified for districts following an 8-3 win over Interlake on May 10.